History, culture & writing

Explore History, Culture & Writing

Explore our extraordinary range of History, Culture and Writing courses and lectures. We offer both introductory and specialist in-depth courses to suit all levels of interest and experience, from ‘How to read a film’ and World literature, to Creative non-fiction writing courses and American history and Politics courses.

Study in-person at City Lit or offsite, or online from the comfort of home, with interactive classes that allow you to participate in discussions with fellow adult students. We offer daytime, evening and weekend courses, both short and long. For more information on our online courses, please see our guide to online learning.

Our tutors are experts in their fields and experienced educators; many have published, teach in universities or share their expertise in the media. Tutors share their knowledge and passion through presentations, readings, interactive discussion and exercises, analysis, and other activities.

Many students return to take more courses, telling us they enjoy being part of our City Lit Learning community.

Our popular courses often sell out quickly, so we invite you to browse and book your place now.

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  1. American political institutions
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 21 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    This four-week interactive lecture-based course examines the US political system from its inception to today – reviewing its structure and constituent parts.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £30.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  2. Picture book writing
    Evening
    Course start date:  Tue 5 Oct 2021 (and 6 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Would you like to write a picture book text for young children? This course is designed for children's writers and for illustrators wishing to write their own stories. Develop both your ideas and your technique.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £52.00
    Rating:
    99% of 100
  3. Developing your fairytale
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 29 Oct 2021 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Online

    Already devised a cunning plan for your own fairytale? This fun workshop coaches students on how to add an extra dash of magic into the cauldron while writing in the fairytale genre.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £28.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  4. Submitting your poetry to magazines
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 29 Oct 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Taught by the editor of Southbank Poetry, this short course is designed to guide students on submitting their poetry to magazines, journals and websites for publications.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £19.00 Concession £19.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  5. Writing for magazines
    Course start date:  Wed 22 Sep 2021 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Get inspired to write on this practical course for freelance journalists and bloggers. Learn to carry out research, interview people, pitch and publish stories, and build your presence on social media.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £52.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  6. Writing non-fiction for children: workshop
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 2 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    On this interactive workshop course, you will have the chance to develop a work-in-progress with constructive feedback from your tutor and classmates.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £139.00 Concession £56.00
  7. The European city in contemporary literature
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Tue 2 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Reading our way through Paris, Madrid and Berlin, in this course we’ll be taking in some of the standout works of urban literature to have been written since 2000: texts that tell us about places, identities and contemporary life, and which prompt us to question how we think about, inhabit and visit cities.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £54.00
  8. Philosophy for the guilty
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 4 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    What can philosophy offer us once we have transgressed, fallen or sinned? You could say that philosophy only truly comes alive to us once we have betrayed our own values. Only then are we ready for philosophy's interrogation.



    This course may include content that some learners may find of a sensitive or challenging nature.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £89.00 Concession £54.00
  9. Saints, scholars, sportsmen and soldiers: How religion, politics, education, sports and war shaped Irish identity: 1884-1922
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 4 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    Ireland has always been a divided nation and a part from religion, other issues that divided the country were politics, education, sport and wars. This course explores Irish history from 1884 until War of Independence and the creation of Northern Ireland in 1922.



    This course forms the second part of an accessible ‘beginners guide’ to Irish history and will help participants gain a general overview of the development of mid-Victorian Ireland from an island ruled by England to the creation of Northern Ireland and the Irish Free state in 1922.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £57.00
  10. Writing a memoir (continuation)
    Evening
    Course start date:  Fri 5 Nov 2021 (and 2 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Some moments in our lives are so powerful they beg to be shared with the world. This continuation course guides students in developing a memoir project that will resonate and inspire.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £129.00 Senior fee £129.00 Concession £52.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  11. Treasures of Byzantine art and architecture
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 11 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    The Byzantines (circa 330-1453) have produced some of the finest works of art and erected the most remarkable buildings in the countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea and beyond.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £42.00
  12. Buddhist philosophy in a nutshell
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 15 Nov 2021

    Location on this date:  Online

    As an ‘atheistic’ religion, Buddhism offers a way beyond the natural unsatisfactoriness of human life not by abandoning living in this world but rather by giving it a new ‘enlightened’ meaning.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £42.00
  13. Writing fiction
    Course start date:  Mon 20 Sep 2021 (and 7 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Online (other locations are available)

    Lovers of fiction can develop their creative writing skills on this practical intermediate course. You'll explore the fundamentals of fiction writing craft such as character and structure, and unlock your imagination to produce compelling prose. Suitable for those with some creative writing experience.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £209.00 Concession £84.00
    Rating:
    86% of 100
  14. Being and beauty: the philosophy of Japanese aesthetics
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Not something apart from everyday life but intrinsic to it, beauty in Japanese thought does not entail perfection but the surprise of imperfect and transient being.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £30.00
  15. The great philosophers
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Mon 10 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the ideas of major philosophers from Plato to Sartre. How does Western philosophy differ from religion



    and science? What problems have the great philosophers tried to solve?



    .



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £239.00 Concession £105.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100

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